Publisher Peggy Tierney on Her New Favorite Conference

I had the pleasure of exhibiting at the AASL (American Association of School Librarians) conference this year, my first time at an AASL. I think it’s my new favorite conference, and I wish I had been going all along.

First, the librarians were all interested in children’s books. I was with my people! The conference and exhibit hall are smaller than ALA, so the exhibit hall wasn’t daunting—attendees weren’t overwhelmed with the number of exhibits and they had time to visit all the booths. I also appreciated the inclusion of “non-compete” times in the schedule, so the librarians could come into the exhibit hall without missing any presentations.

At the conference, I put my energy into raising awareness of Surviving the Angel of Death, by Eva Mozes Kor. Eva died last summer, but I am still committed to fulfill her dream of the book being taught in classrooms, and sharing her story of survival in Auschwitz as a 10-year-old child, along with her messages of hope and healing.

A film about Eva was released this year, produced by Ted Green Films and WFYI. They used film footage to create a virtual reality experience of Eva’s lectures and immersive visuals of the Auschwitz camp. I took VR headsets for librarians at the AASL to experience for themselves, and everyone who tried it thought it was amazing and understood how it could deepen readers’ understanding of the story.

For more about the film and the virtual reality experience, click here. If you are interested in buying the book or film, both of which have educator guides, visit us here. If you have VR headsets, the Eva story app is available to buy online.